It looks like I didn’t do a birthday egotism post last year.
For those of you new to this blog (and by new, I mean you’ve been here for less than two years), this is a sporadic tradition of mine for the last decade plus, wherein I step back and reflect on the awesome things I’ve done in the last year (or two or however many it’s been since I did the last post of this kind). It started one year when I was feeling down on my birthday; I decided to counteract that by making myself list my achievements, with no disclaimers, caveats, or modesty allowed. It turns out this is a useful thing to do every so often, and so I shall ask again the traditional question:
I’m thirty-six. What do I have to show for it?
Well, for starters, I BOUGHT A HOUSE.
We bought a house; my husband and my sister share in the credit here, both from the financial and labor standpoints. But I went out to find a house and I found this one and then we bought it and it makes me so happy. On Saturday we’re having a housewarming party. Because it’s OUR HOUSE. 😀
Work-wise, in the two years since my last post, I have completed four novels (one of which was written mostly before my birthday in 2014, but only hit “the end” after), two novellas, a novelette, and four short stories. Also, ten pieces of fanfiction. I’ve published three novels (Chains and Memory, Voyage of the Basilisk, and In the Labyrinth of Drakes), a short story mini-collection (Monstrous Beauty), and five short stories (“Daughter of Necessity,” “The Damnation of St. Teresa of Avila,” “The Mirror-City,” “From the Editorial Page of the Falchester Weekly Review,” and as of today, “To Rise No More”). I’ve been on two more book tours, one with Mary Robinette Kowal, one on my own. I had my first signing event at Forbidden Planet in London. I attended my first foreign convention, Imaginales, as an invited guest; the translation of A Natural History of Dragons won the Prix Imaginales for Best Translated Novel.
I’ve learned to play some piano pieces that don’t date back to when I was taking lessons, more than twenty years ago. I hit a milestone with my photography, having the first public exhibition of my work at Borderlands Books, and sold several of those photos — the first time I’ve earned money from that hobby. And speaking of hobby milestones, I got my black belt in shorin-ryu karate, after about seven and a half years of study.
Blurring the line between “work” and “hobby,” I continued freelancing for Legend of the Five Rings, and contributed to Tiny Frontiers (which has a Kickstarter going right now for a Mecha and Monsters expansion, plug plug). I’ve continued my Legend of the Five Rings campaign, which is now the longest-running game I’ve ever undertaken. My players make tragic faces at me any time they hear the word “end” in conjunction with the game, so I guess they’re enjoying it. <g>
I went on a second Mediterranean cruise, visiting Venice; Dubrovnik in Croatia; Kotor in Montenegro; Herculaneum, Tuscania, and Florence in Italy; Monaco; St. Tropez in France; and Monsterrat and Barcelona in Spain, adding four new countries to my travel map. I went back to France for Imaginales, and got to spend a few days in Basel, Switzerland before heading off to London; my father’s ancestors hailed from Switzerland, not terribly far from Basel, so I was delighted to visit there at last.
As usual, I feel like there are things I’m forgetting — which is a good sign all on its own.
So: thirty-six. Bring on the next year, and all the rest to come!